October 2021


All Livingston Parish School System employees received an added lump sum payment this month after the school board approved the superintendent’s pay raise plan in September.

Full-time, certified employees received a $1,000 increase plus a one-time stipend of $750, for a single lump sum disbursement of $1,750 on October 7.  The $1,000 increase will be annualized and built into the salary schedules beginning July 1, 2022.

Full-time classified employees received a $500 increase plus a one-time stipend of $750, for a lump sum payment of $1,250 on October 7.  The $500 increase will be annualized and built into the salary schedule beginning July 1, 2022.

Part-time employees received a pay increase and a one-time stipend based proportionately on their job status. Their reoccurring increase will also be built into the salary schedule beginning July 1, 2022.

“I would like to thank the board members for their continued commitment to all our employees and to the children of our community.  I would also like to thank every employee who goes above and beyond every day to make a difference in our children’s lives. We know that when we invest in our children today, we are investing in the future of our community,” Superintendent Joe Murphy said.

Murphy said the October 7 lump payment was a $7.3 million addition to the district’s current 2021-2022 budget.



The STEAM Express is a mobile classroom that is filled with a variety of hands-on interactive learning activities.

The district’s STEAM Express is visiting campuses across the parish this month inspiring learning and excitement for science, technology, engineering, art and math subjects. The STEAM Express is the district’s mobile classroom that is filled with a variety of hands-on interactive activities that students and their parents can do together.

The STEAM Express schedule for October includes the following events:

  • 14 –Juban Parc Elementary “Full STEAM Ahead” Event, 5 pm to 7 pm
  • 15 & 18 — Denham Springs Elementary “PBIS Reward” Activity, 10 am to 1 pm both days
  • 19 — South Walker Elementary “Superhero Math Night” for Pre-K, 1st and 2nd graders, 6 pm to 7:30 pm
  • 21 — North Corbin Elementary “Fall Festival Math Night’” 6 pm to 8 pm
  • 23 – Hebron Church Fall Festival, community-wide event, 5 pm to 7 pm
  • 26 — Maurepas School “Math Night,” 5 pm to 6:30 pm



Pictured, left to right, are LSU STEM Pathways Consultant Jessica Vicknair; Lewis Vincent Elementary 3rd Grade Math and Science Teacher Karleigh Severio; Seventh Ward Elementary 2nd Grade Teacher Kristina Dunlap; Gray’s Creek Elementary STEM Lab Teacher Julianne Sadler; and Juban Parc Elementary Instructional Coach Jordan Guidry, who recently worked together to develop STEM learning activities for the district’s second-grade social studies curriculum.  In this exercise, they created clay animation displays to depict the early westward expansion of the United States.

Livingston Parish Public Schools is partnering with the LSU Gordon A. Cain Center on a pilot program to integrate STEM learning at the middle and elementary levels.  Twelve schools in the district are participating in the pilot effort, and implementation of the program is underway with each participating campus customizing the program to best fit its teaching corps and student population.

Instructional Supervisor Kelly LaBauve said the nine elementary campuses in the program are committed to implementing a STEM learning activity or project for each nine-week grading period, and the three middle school campuses are offering STEM elective courses to their 7th and 8th grade students. She said the district’s planning team, in conjunction with LSU education consultants, will be observing the various efforts throughout the school year to determine those best practices that can be shared with other schools in the district.

While a full report on the pilot program will not be complete until next summer, LaBauve said schools are already reporting positive indicators.  In particular, she said students appear to be more engaged in STEM learning activities than other activities. They are expressing more creativity in developing their work, and they are taking more ownership of their work, she said.  At the same time, she said teachers are seeing a decrease in negative classroom behavior in those class periods where STEM integration is occurring.



Robotics teams from high schools in Louisiana, Mississippi and Oklahoma participated in a competition on October 9 at Denham Springs High School’s Hornsby Gym.

The 8th Annual Dow Red Stick Rumble, an off-season FIRST® (For the Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition and Festival was sponsored by Dow Chemical. The gym was transformed into a space station, where students competed with giant robots battling on a field designed from the minds of Lucasfilm and Star Wars: Force for Change. The winning team received the coveted Red Stick Rumble Trophy.

Denham Springs placed two teams in the competition.  Denham Venom #2 was among the top three alliance of robots. Denham Venom #1, which was part of a second-ranked alliance, finished a runner-up in the competition, having to compete against fellow classmates in the final match.


Dow Red Stick Rumble Director Daniel Eiland announces the start of a new robotics competition round. Schools from Louisiana, Mississippi and Oklahoma competed in the Oct. 9 event.

The Denham Venom #1 team operated FRC 8044 for the robotics competition, which was tasked with capturing balls, throwing them through a target and returning to an anchored position in the center of the court. The team included, pictured left to right, LSU student and team mentor Bailey Smoorenburg, Junior Brady Procell, and Junior Logan Labauve.